Thursday, August 18, 2011
Genre: Crime Fiction, Murder Mystery, Dark Fiction, Horror.
Favorite character: Camille and Amma.
All in all: I’m speechless.
Synopsis: "My sweater was new, stinging red and ugly." An edgy first line, and it provides the perfect opening for this gritty debut novel by journalist Flynn. Her protagonist, Camille Preaker, is a reporter for a second-rate Chicago newspaper. A solitary woman with a cynical bent, she appears to have carved out a workable life for herself despite a painful past and an estranged family. But when a second young girl turns up missing in Camille's hometown -- shortly after another local girl was found murdered -- Camille's editor sends her home to Missouri to cover the story. The question is, can Camille get to the bottom of the story before her demons get the best of her? ~Goodreads.com
My Thoughts: Oh. My. God. Oh my God. OhmyGod. This book is so amazing I want to make everyone read it right now. Everyone who likes a brooding, dramatic murder mystery that is.
It is harsh, tragic, sad, gritty and real. It is disturbing and made me cringe. At the basis is a horrific murder mystery and a reporter, Camille Preaker, who returns to her home town in Missouri to get the inside story. As she gets closer to the events, she peels off layers of her own relationships, the past and her own troubled psyche. Watching Camille’s journey is like watching her twist in a whirlpool that gets tighter and tighter until she finally gets sucked under.
She is a strong and vulnerable character at the same time. And damaged. Oh so damaged. If someone had told me about her, I don’t know if I would want to be friends with her, but reading about her and getting to know her is addictive. She is smart and self-destructive at the same time. Doesn’t sound like a great combination? You need to read her story and judge for yourself.
The other characters are odd and frightening to different degrees, they come to life in a fascinating way. I’ve seen these people before, watched them on tv, heard about them or even lived next door to them. No one I think I’d want to be friends with (except perhaps her editor Curry and his wife Evelyn, the only nurturing people in the book), but I just had to learn more about them.
It’s a gripping tale that examines small towns, family secrets and the psychology of both. It’s about dynamics between people, twisted mother-daughter relationships, unhealthy friendships, secret trysts. Flynn is astute in her observations and holds nothing back. Sometimes the language is crass and jarring, but it is so poetic at the same time. It is a smartly written story and if you don’t like the story, the beautiful writing style is worth looking at.
The plot kept me turning the pages and wondering “whodunit” and why. This part of the story is intertwined in the characters and their behavior. I had my suspicions and you will too if you read this, but nothing is really as it seems which you kind of get even a third of the way into the book.
I'm being a bit vague because I don't want to give even a morsel away and ruin any part of the story. I recommend just diving in.
This is probably one of the best books I’ve read all year. You will not get a fairy tale ending, but you will get a story that you can’t put down.
Posted by Midnyte Reader at 11:00 AM